HomeMediaLatest NewsThe hurried Delhi, the hidden Beijing: how Russia's turn to the East actually looks

The hurried Delhi, the hidden Beijing: how Russia's turn to the East actually looks

14 September 2022

Salikhov Marcel R. President, Principal Director on Economic Studies, Head of the Economic Department

Marcel Salikhov, President of the Institute for Energy and Finance, commented to the BBC Russian service on the situation with the replacement of "unfriendly" trading partners in the oil and gas sector with loyal Asian ones on more favorable terms.

Since the beginning of the energy war with Europe, Russia, as the Kremlin claims, has redirected part of the oil flows to Asia. This happened due to transportation by sea: the "pipe" to China (the oil pipeline "Eastern Siberia - the Pacific Ocean") already worked to the maximum. The volume of pumping through it since the beginning of the war has not changed much. This follows from the data of the Argus agency, which the BBC has studied.

But everything has changed in the supply of oil by sea. In February 2022, Europe accounted for 60% of shipments, Asia for 40%. Now - on the contrary, Marcel Salikhov says. In general, both production and oil supplies, after a failure in the spring, almost reached the pre-war level - that is, they went to zero, but did not win.

Ones were late with infrastructure

It is much more difficult for Europe to refuse Russian gas than from oil. But Russia also will not be able to quickly find new buyers.

The main problem here is not even in demand and political position, but in logistics. Unlike oil, gas cannot be quickly “loaded” onto a tanker and redirected to Asia: the infrastructure for liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Russia is very poorly developed and operates mainly on sanctioned equipment.

Since the beginning of the war, the share of China and Turkey in Russian gas exports has increased, not because volumes have increased, but because gas exports to Europe have plummeted, Salikhov explains. By itself, gas exports to Turkey in the first half of 2022 generally fell by 12%, he adds.

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